Into the Dark (Echo Falls Series #3)

Into the Dark (Echo Falls Series #3)

4.3 25
by Peter Abrahams, Julie Dretzin

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In Echo Falls, secrets buried in the past don't always stay there.

An idyllic day of snowshoeing on Grampy's land with Joey Strade turns out to be less than idyllic when thirteen-year-old super sleuth Ingrid Levin-Hill stumbles upon a body lying in the snow. This discovery sends the town of Echo Falls into a tailspin in which secrets long hidden are revealed

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In Echo Falls, secrets buried in the past don't always stay there.

An idyllic day of snowshoeing on Grampy's land with Joey Strade turns out to be less than idyllic when thirteen-year-old super sleuth Ingrid Levin-Hill stumbles upon a body lying in the snow. This discovery sends the town of Echo Falls into a tailspin in which secrets long hidden are revealed and Grampy gets sent to jail. While Ingrid works to clear Grampy's name and uncover what really happened to the man in the snow, she discovers even more secrets she wishes she never knew. Just like the character Gretel, whom Ingid is playing in the Prescott Players' production of Hansel and Gretel, Ingrid must go deep into the darkness to find the truth.

In the third book in the Edgar Award–nominated and national bestselling Echo Falls series, Peter Abrahams's talent for building suspense shines as Ingrid embarks on her most harrowing adventure yet.

Editorial Reviews

AGERANGE: Ages 12 to 15.

I’ve read the two previous Echo Falls mysteries featuring Ingrid (Down the Rabbit Hole and Behind the Curtain) and enjoyed them, but I think this one may be the best of all. It is solid middle school fare, and any reader age 10 and up would like this mystery. The murder is very close to home, since it occurs on Ingrid’s grandfather’s farm. Ingrid’s grandfather is arrested, accused of the crime. Oddly, he stubbornly won’t tell the truth about where he was at the time of the murder. So Ingrid has a lot to figure out. A subplot of the story is Grampy’s heroism in WW II and how this may be a factor in the murder. This look back into history works well as it is woven into the modern story. Abrahams is an experienced writer and he knows his craft; we are fortunate to have him turn to YA fiction. Reviewer: Claire Rosser
March 2008 (Vol. 42, No.2)

Judy Beemer
With her love of Holmesian deduction and wordplay, thirteen-year-old Ingrid sleuths into a dark past, searching out secrets to save Grampy from an unjust murder accusation. Braver than Buffy and twice as believable, Ingrid convincingly walks the neverland between adolescence and adulthood in this third book in the Echo Falls Mysteries series. Edgar Award nominee Abrahams artfully blends humor, history, intelligence, and suspense to create just-right prose that keeps the pages turning without ever seeming artificial. Pre-teen and early teen readers, male and female, will identify with Ingrid's family problems and disregard for school, yet admire her gutsy cleverness. Reviewer: Judy Beemer
School Library Journal

Gr 5-8- When an environmental agent is murdered on her grandfather's farm, Ingrid Levin-Hill, 13, is again cast in the role of detective. Her grandfather is the primary suspect, but she knows that honorable, independent, and sometimes cranky Grampy could not have committed the crime. So why does he refuse to give an alibi? From the outset Major Ferrand seems a much more likely suspect. He also is a World War II veteran and the town newspaper is about to present a series of articles featuring the three men from Echo Falls who served in the war. Alymer Hill refuses to offer an alibi for his whereabouts at the time of the shooting (the killer using coincidentally a World War II issue rifle). The story is accessible, and Ingrid's ability to not only think through the crime but also solve it is impressive. There's suspense, as Ingrid is captured by the murderer during her investigation, and a fire that also puts her life in danger. Additional appeal comes from Ingrid's friendship with the sheriff's son and her relationship with her brother and grandfather.-Sheila Fiscus, Our Lady of Peace School, Erie, PA

Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
In the third title in the Echo Falls Mystery series, intrepid 13-year-old sleuth Ingrid Levin-Hill grapples with not only a mystery but a family crisis: Her beloved Grampy is accused of murdering the local conservation agent, and there's strong circumstantial evidence against him. Things aren't helped by his secretiveness about personal business and his refusal to discuss secrets from the past that could exonerate him. In her own slow but steady way, Ingrid eventually unmasks the killer and uncovers Grampy's-and some townspeople's-secrets, some hidden for decades. The hallmark of this series is the author's revealing of clues to readers ahead of Ingrid. This is fun, but it can be a flaw, too, because readers paying attention figure out some details before Ingrid does so that some of her epiphanies aren't surprises. There's some excitement and enjoyment with the mystery and the growing bond between Ingrid and crush Joey, but this installment seems tired, especially compared with Down the Rabbit Hole (2005), the first and best in the series. (Fiction. 10-13)

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Product Details

Recorded Books, LLC
Publication date:
Echo Falls Series, #3
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years

Read an Excerpt

Into the Dark

Chapter One

"Brucie?" said Jill Monteiro, director of the Prescott Players. "Could we have that line again?"

"'Do not vorry, my little Gretel,'" Brucie said. "'All vill be vell.'"

Jill gazed at him for a moment, her dark eyes thoughtful. "Ah," she said. "That would be a German accent?"

"Jawohl, Kommandant," said Brucie.

"Hansel being German," Jill said.

Brucie clicked his heels.

"Interesting," said Jill.

"Oh, dear," said Sylvia Breen, cast as the witch but in real life assistant head teller at Central State Savings and Loan. "I'm no good at accents. No good at all."

"You see the problem, Brucie," Jill said.

"Nein," said Brucie.

"Either everybody does a German accent or nobody," she said.

"Completely hopeless," said Mrs. Breen.

"So we're gonna take a vote?" Brucie said.

Ingrid Levin-Hill, sitting on a stool beside Mrs. Breen, script in her hand and all Gretel's lines underlined in red, saw that Brucie's right leg was doing that twitchy thing. Ingrid loved being in the Prescott Players, loved this beautiful little theater in Prescott Hall, loved everything about putting on plays—especially working with Jill. Jill was a real actress: She'd been in a Hollywood movie, Tongue and Groove, where she'd said, "Make it a double," to the Eugene Levy character with this wicked look in her eye, best moment in the movie, in Ingrid's opinion. She'd watched the video many times—the only way anyone had ever seen the movie, since there'd been no actual theatrical release. Working with Jill was a privilege.

But working with Brucie? Ingrid had known Brucie most of her life. They had the very same birthday, a disturbing fact. She remembered Brucie on the playground, one of those kids—the only one, in her experience—who never tired of making himself dizzy. Now Brucie was the eighth-grade class clown at Ferrand Middle, taken seriously by no one. Until recently: about a month before, in fact, when his Xmas Revue performance of the wizard, in the scene where Oz is revealed to be a fraud, brought down the house—even though it wasn't supposed to be funny, and in rehearsal Brucie had missed every cue and botched his lines. But something had happened in the live performance, something that had prompted Mr. Samuels, editor and publisher of the Echo Falls Echo, to write in his "Arts, Entertainment, and Things to Do" column: "Do not miss the hilarious youngster Bruce Berman as the wizard like you've never seen him." Brucie carried the clipping in his pocket.

"I make a motion," he said, "zat ve do German accents."

The cast—Ingrid; Mrs. Breen; Meredith O'Malley (playing the woodcutter's wife), who looked a bit like Marilyn Monroe if Marilyn had reached middle age and let herself go; and the woodcutter, Mr. Santos, of Santos Texaco, who did a great wiseguy voice—all waited for Jill's reaction.

"Who vill second ze motion?" said Brucie.

Jill turned to him. "Know what I'm afraid of, Brucie?" she said.

"Grizzly bears?" said Brucie.

Jill blinked, a single blink, long and slow. Ingrid had never seen her do that before; for just a second, Jill didn't seem to be enjoying herself. "I'm afraid," she said, "of any additional little touch that might tip us into parody."

"Huh?" said Brucie.

"Parody," said Jill. "Like Monty Python and the Holy Grail."

"Monty Python?" said Brucie. "Three thumbs up." He got off his stool, pranced around the stage, making clip-clop sounds and banging imaginary coconuts to-gether. "Python rules." Ingrid's best friend, Stacy, would have smacked him; Ingrid herself came close.

"Siddown," said Mr. Santos.

Brucie skidded to a stop and sat.

"Decisions like this always come back to understanding what the story is about," said Jill.


"These two kids get kicked out of the house," said Mr. Santos.

"And meet up with a witch who lures them with a gingerbread house," said Meredith O'Malley.

"Don't forget the bread crumbs," said Mrs. Breen.

"You're giving me the plot," Jill said. "But what's it about? That's the root of everything we're going to do with this play." Jill was back to normal. She had a lovely, expressive face; even under the dim houselights it was shining.

"Kids on their own," Ingrid said.

Jill nodded. "Kids on their own," she said. "Yes—and deep in a dark and dangerous place."

"Ooo," said Meredith, in her breathy voice. "I just got a shiver."

"So—vote or no vote?" said Brucie.

Ingrid stood alone outside Prescott Hall—a huge old mansion with lots of towers and gargoyles, now mostly hidden by scaffolding. She waited for her ride. Nothing unusual about that: Mom and Dad had busy lives, were often late. Meanwhile a gray squirrel was running through the snow, a fast squirrel that kicked up tiny white puffs. Hey—it didn't really run, more like bounded along, the hind paws landing first. How come she'd never noticed that before? Like Sherlock Holmes, her favorite fictional character by far, Ingrid made a habit of observing small details. She took a close look at its tracks. Most were blurred because of how fast it had been going, but she found one clear set—the hind paws, landing first, had five toes; the front paws, actually landing behind, only four. People had the same number of fingers and toes, so why would—


She turned, saw Dad's TT parked in the circular drive behind her. The window slid down. "Ingrid," Dad called, "I honked three times."

Ingrid got in the car. It smelled of Dad's aftershave—a nice smell. "You really didn't hear me?" he said.

"Sorry, Dad."

"Got your head in the clouds these days," he said.

And you've been crabby for months. But Ingrid didn't say it. Dad worked hard—he was vice president at the Ferrand Group, and Ingrid was starting to understand that Mr. Ferrand was a pretty demanding boss. In good light now, on days like this, for example, she could see tiny lines at the corners of Dad's eyes; but still the handsomest dad in Echo Falls.

"How was rehearsal?" he said.

Into the Dark. Copyright (c) by Peter Abrahams . Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Into the Dark 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 25 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a book of exciting and fascinating adventures. Young readers will be swallowed by this wonderful book. I read the whole thing in just 1 day because i dare not to put it down! i reccomened to all!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The leader jumps up on High Branch. "All cats old enough to catch their own prey gather benith High Branch to hear what I have to say." She waits. "All newcommers are welcome to stay. We are a thriving clan, but to ensure we stay strong we should go on more border patrols (avertise). Whiteflower will be in charge in that. Also we have made an allience with Snowclan at 'snowflake' res three." She smiles. "Lastly, since our medicine cat Tigerstrike has been missing Navypaw will train with me. I do have some experince with medicine. Untill further notice." She jumps down. "Clan dismised."
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This book keeps you on the edge try it,not nowing what would cone next left you hanging for a while
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Cailin McCaffrey More than 1 year ago
how many times have i read this good a book???0
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Xinyu Huang More than 1 year ago
this one could have used a little more work, it was better then the last one though. When i first read this series, i thought it would be pretty decent, but i guess i was wrong... It's really obvious who the bad guy is. Its like the reader is yelling to Ingrid 'The murderer is right in front of you!!!!'. Mysterys are supposed to be suspenseful and suprising. But i think that Ingrid is a rather likeable character, curious, passionate, funny, and nice.
Katie Lafont More than 1 year ago
i have read this series four times and have loved it each time i would recogmend it to anyone who likes a good mystery with a lot of action and suspence
Danielle Phillips More than 1 year ago
i love this book and series
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Alfie03rocks More than 1 year ago
OK...Now this book in my opinion is the best Echo Falls book ever! I liked it from beginning to end. It had kept me on the edge of my seat because you really want to know what happens next. Trust me if you enjoy thrillers then pick this book up.
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